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Category: Arts & Crafts

Sewing, knitting, spinning, painting, photography, writing, music… anything that involves creativity and beauty.

How to Spin Yarn: Using My New Lendrum Spinning Wheel

By: Missy B

I have been wanting a spinning wheel for several years now, ever since I learned how to spin yarn on a drop spindle. I took one lesson here at the end of summer from a local spinner at her yarn shop, and I tried out a few wheels at the Sedalia Fiber Festival last year. […]

How To Make Your Own Lip Balm

By: Missy B

Here’s a video I made a little while back experimenting with making my own lip balm. There are lots of different recipes on the internet, but I like to keep it simple and used beeswax, coconut oil, olive oil and honey. You can also add essential oils for scent (I like peppermint) and mineral makeup […]

The Beer Drinking Evolution of a Home Brewer

By: Tommy B

Every homestead needs a homebrew… well not every homestead, but ours certainly does! I have evolved in the realm of drinking beer from my younger college days, when we just bought the cheapest beer possible – to gradually learning (and retraining my palate) about the world of “good” beer. Over the years I have tried […]

Shockley’s Old-Timey Festival 2010

By: Everett S

Below is a video highlighting some of our favorite demonstrations at the annual Shockey’s Old Timey Festival in Hillsville, VA. One of my favorite things about living in the country is that people still know how to do this stuff.

Missy’s First Post

By: Missy B

Lately I’ve been working on a few sewing projects such as making curtains and pillows for our new place (I will post some pics when I’m all done) and I have been adjusting my craft room to make manipulating fabric a little more manageable. I found this large wooden table in the upstairs of the […]

Giving & Receiving Useful Gifts

By: Everett S

I got a Poulan Pro 18-inch 42cc gas-powered, chainsaw for Christmas. It’s the kind in this chainsaw comparison. Along with it I was given some stocking stuffers like work gloves, ear plugs and some smaller gifts like a book on chainsaw maintenance and helmet with a face shield for cutting wood. I gave my wife, among other things, several sewing and kitting books, some contraption that helps her ball up hand-spun yarn, some wool… Next year she might get an actual spinning wheel, but the darned things cost over $400 new so she’s fine with a drop spindle for now.

The thing that bothers a lot of us simple-life enthusiasts about Christmas is the compulsive consumerism it fosters. But for us it isn’t so much the tradition of buying gifts for friends and family – because there’s something special about giving, after all – as it is about the TYPES of gifts we used to give and receive.

How To Make Your Own Soap

By: Everett S

In this video I demonstrate a very simple homemade soap recipe using lye, lard, coconut oil, peppermint oil and food coloring.

How To Make Farmhouse Cheddar Cheese

By: Everett S

The video is of a class I taught for the Denver Urban Homesteading Group last month called Cheesemaking 101. It should help get you started if you want to learn how to make your own farmhouse cheddar cheese.